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Please read the application instructions below very carefully. 

The UC Berkeley Graduate application must be submitted by December 1 at 8:59pm PST to be considered for admission and awards (no separate application process is necessary for award consideration). Late applications will not be accepted. More information on dates and deadlines is available here: https://publichealth.berkeley.edu/admissions/graduate/dates-and-deadlines/

UC Berkeley Graduate Application

Complete an online application to the UC Berkeley Graduate Division and submit the following items:

  • Transcripts from each institution you have attended
  • If you are submitting international records, upload a copy of the degree(s) with corresponding English translations (if applicable)
    • See more information about international student transcripts in the “Additional Application Instructions for International Students” section below
  • Official TOEFL score sent to UC Berkeley (code 4833), or IELTS score sent electronically to UC Berkeley, if applicable
  • Official GRE score sent to UC Berkeley, if applicable (code 4833),
  • CV or Resume
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Personal History Statement
  • Three Letters of Recommendation from a combination of professional and academic recommenders
  • Submit by December 1 at 8:59pm PST
  • UC Berkeley application fee or fee waiver.

Access the UC Berkeley Graduate Application Here

The cost for the UC Berkeley Graduate Application for U.S. Citizens and current Permanent Residents is $120. The application fee for all other applicants is $140. Payments should be submitted by credit card only.

If you would like to request a fee waiver, you must reach out to the Berkeley Graduate Division.

Visit the Berkeley Graduate Application Fee Waiver page for more information.

Information on Supplemental Materials

International Students: Please see more information about international student transcripts in the “Additional Application Instructions for International Students” section below.

How to submit transcripts:

For application review purposes only, include copies of transcripts for all of the post-secondary institutions you attended, including study abroad institutions in the Berkeley Graduate Application. During the online application process, you will be prompted to upload scanned documents. Uploaded transcripts should be recent and include the following:

  • your name
  • the institution name
  • dates of attendance
  • conferral date if applicable
  • grades/marks received and credits
  • If you studied abroad, your study abroad grades must also be listed in the transcript, otherwise you will need to submit a transcript directly from the study abroad institution
  • Note: Official transcripts will be requested if you are admitted and then decide to attend UC Berkeley

Please do not send any paper transcripts to Berkeley Public Health—any unsolicited materials will be destroyed.

Please read the directions below carefully. 

Know your program’s requirements!

  • GRE test scores are not required for the Infectious Diseases and Immunology PhD program only. If you would still like to submit scores, please read the instructions on how to do so below.
  • Health Policy PhD applicants must submit GRE scores for the upcoming cycle. The current GRE Exemption Policy (see section below) for these applicants will still hold.
    • Applications to these programs will not be considered complete and will not be reviewed by Berkeley Public Health’s Admissions Committee without the required test scores.
GRE Exemption Policy:
  • Applicants who have completed a MD, PhD or equivalent doctoral-level degree at the time of application from an accredited institution are not required to submit GRE scores.
  • Students currently enrolled in medical, dental, optometry, business, or law school can submit their MCAT, DAT, OAT, GMAT, or LSAT scores, respectively, in lieu of the GRE. Other professional school exams will not be eligible as alternatives to the GRE exam.
  • Applicants who have completed a MBBS degree and have passed the Step 1 and Step 2 of the USMLE are not required to submit GRE scores. In order to be eligible for the GRE waiver, copies of both official USMLE scores will be required to be uploaded with your application.
Minimum GRE Scores:
  • We do not have a minimum GRE score as we review applications holistically; however, competitive applicants tend to score in the 50th percentile and above. Many program pages include the average GRE scores of admitted students for that specific program.
How to submit scores:
  • While you can take your exam as late as the date of the deadline, we recommend that you plan to take your exam no later than October to allow time for scores to arrive in time for consideration for fall admission.
  • At-home test scores are acceptable.
  • All applicants who submit GRE test scores must send official scores through ETS directly to UC Berkeley. Please use code 4833. 
  • Scores must be from within 5 years of the test date for them to be considered valid. In order to apply, you must retake the test if your scores are more than five years old.

If the GRE is optional for your program and you choose not to submit scores, we recommend that you highlight your verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing skills that prepare you for the specific program to which you are applying in your application and statement of purpose.

  • This can be completed coursework, such as undergraduate or post-baccalaureate math/stats or epi/biostats courses, quantitative research, data analysis, or evaluation experience, verbal/writing strengths such as professional publications and/or presentations, etc.).
  • You may also submit a writing sample or other supporting documents.

Berkeley Public Health’s Admissions Committee requires that a minimum of three letters of recommendation be submitted electronically to your UC Berkeley Graduate Application.

Typically, we recommend you have at least one letter of recommendation from an academic and two from individuals who can evaluate your professional experience. However, please thoroughly look at the requirements and qualifications of the program you are applying to for more guidance. Overall, it will be in your best interest to have three individuals who can attest to your academic and/or professional ability to succeed in a public health career.

For academic references, we recommend you ask professors who you think will write the strongest recommendations. A strong quality letter attesting to your ability to succeed in the program will weigh more than a generic letter from a high-ranking professor.

Berkeley Public Health does not accept hard-copy letters sent to our offices.

Requesting Recommendations:
  • In the application’s Recommendations section, enter the contact information for each recommender and send the email requests. (If your recommender does not receive the request, contact sphadmit@berkeley.edu)
  • Recommenders will upload letters directly to your application. Please notify your recommenders to look out for the email request with instructions.
  • You can submit your application before your letters are uploaded. However, we encourage you to follow up with your recommenders to ensure that they submit their letters before the deadline.
  • Note: The Letterbanc service cannot be used for this program.
Statement of Purpose

Word limit: 1,500 words

Your Statement of Purpose should explain why you are pursuing graduate training in public health. Your essay should also explain your eventual career goals and why you need a degree in your specific program. You can choose to explain why you are pursuing this degree now and why at Berkeley Public Health. If you are applying to a doctoral program, include your proposed research topics. Please be sure to check your program’s page, as some programs have specific questions to answer. If there are no specific program guidelines, please follow the above-mentioned general guidelines.

Here are some best practices from the DREAM Office and the UC Berkeley Graduate Division on how to write the statement of purpose.

Personal History Statement

Word limit: 1,000 words

Your Personal History Statement gives you an opportunity to add some individuality and depth to the information provided in your Statement of Purpose. Your Personal History Statement can include information about who you are as a person, your family background, cultural background, socioeconomic status, educational advantages and/or experiences growing up. It is intended to give you the opportunity to provide a narrative about your diverse personal experiences. It is important to be concise and impactful by focusing on a specific part of your life experience.

Note: Not all schools require a Personal History Statement but we do.

Here are some best practices from the DREAM Office and the UC Berkeley Graduate Division on how to write the personal history statement.

Additional Application Instructions for International Students

International applicants should apply early in order to allow sufficient time for financial and visa document preparation. In addition to the above materials, please submit the following:

All applicants from countries/regions in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency via a TOEFL or IELTS score. This requirement applies to applicants from Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan, Latin America, the Middle East, Israel, the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, most European countries, and non-English-speaking countries in Africa.

We recommend that you plan to take any required exams no later than October to allow time for scores to arrive in time for consideration for fall admission.

For Fall 2021, tests taken before June 1, 2019 will not be accepted even if your score was reported to UC Berkeley.

The USMLE and other similar exams are not approved substitutes for the TOEFL.

You may be exempt from this requirement if you:
  • Have a basic degree from a recognized institution in a country where the official language is English,
  • Have completed a basic or advanced degree at an institution, in the United States or a United States institution abroad, where the language of instruction is English and the institution is accredited by one of the United States’ regional accrediting agencies,
  • have completed at least one year of full-time academic course work with a grade B or better at a regionally accredited* institution within the United States.

If you qualify for an exemption, you must upload an unofficial transcript from the recognized U.S. institution to your Berkeley Graduate Application. If you are unsure if your country of education qualifies you for a TOEFL exemption, please contact us at sphadmit@berkeley.edu.

Minimum Scores:
  • TOEFL: Paper: 570, Internet (iBT): 90
  • IELTS: 7
How to submit TOEFL:

Official TOEFL test scores administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) must be submitted to UC Berkeley (code 4833). We do not accept MyBest Scores.

How to submit IELTS:

Beginning for the Fall 2021 application cycle, we will no longer be accepting paper Test Report Forms. All IELTS scores must be sent electronically from the testing center to UC Berkeley (no institution code is required).

Our address for identification purposes is: University of California, Berkeley, Graduate Division, Sproul Hall Rm 318, MC 5900, Berkeley, CA 94720.

Please do not mail any score reports to us.

Graduates of recognized academic institutions outside the United States should hold a degree equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree. Equivalency is determined by International Evaluators in the Graduate Admissions Office. If you are unsure if your degree is equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree, you can email us at sphadmit@berkeley.edu.

Submitting Transcripts to Berkeley Graduate Application

Please upload copies of unofficial or official foreign transcripts and degrees to the UC Berkeley Graduate application. Academic records should:

  • Be issued in the original language and accompanied by English translations if required (usually prepared by your university or Ministry of Education, unless the institution issues original documents in English)
    • English translations are required for all languages except Spanish; degree names and grades should be transliterated, not converted into English words or the U.S. grades of A-F.
    • If your home institution does not issue documents in English, you may submit translations prepared by certified translators for the American Translators Association.
  • In general, be issued by the school and include the school’s stamp or embossed seal and the signature of the authorizing official. For more detailed information on acceptable documents, please contact us at sphadmit@berkeley.edu.
  • If your academic records do not include official evidence of the award of your degree, you must also submit additional documents that verify the degree conferral, such as a degree certificate.

Official transcripts or academic records for all university-level studies you have completed, at U.S. institutions and abroad will be required if admitted.